Power & Security, Technology Nuclear weapons in an age of emerging technologies

January 31, 2020
By Kristen de Groot | Penn Today

Emerging technologies like artificial intelligence increase the risk that nuclear-armed states will use those weapons, said Beatrice Fihn, executive director of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.

The only way to prevent that from happening, she contends, is to eliminate nuclear weapons entirely.

“The risk has always been there, and we are going on 75 years of being really, really lucky,” said Fihn. “But based on our technologies, we’ll run out of luck and if we keep nuclear weapons forever they will, at some point, be used.”

Fihn, a Swedish lawyer who in 2017 accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the Campaign, shared her thoughts on abolishing nuclear weapons in this age of artificial intelligence during a talk at Perry World House (PWH), moderated by Michael C. Horowitz, PWH interim director.

The conversation was part of her weeklong visit to campus as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at PWH. Other events in the week included meeting with undergraduate and graduate students, lectures at Penn Law and the political science department in the School of Arts and Sciences, and participating in a podcast.

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